VIVA LAS VEGAS!
- Story / Photos By Paige Petrone
I love Las Vegas any time of year! It’s so much fun and just a four-hour drive from L.A. transports you to the middle of an oasis filled with opportunities for vacation bliss. When you head to Nevada in the summer months you must prepare yourself for intense heat. It is a dry heat so you must hydrate during the entire trip. There are infinite opportunities for quality time poolside with friends and family. And poolside we sat, for five days straight, while enjoying “Mommie Margaritas” and “double shot” Pina Coladas. Delish. Nobody does pool party and cocktails like Las Vegas. Of this I am certain. We also ventured to The Wynn Hotel Pool, as it was a short walk across a bridge to enter the hotel from The Palazzo. Their pool environment gives and elusion of Italy or some European getaway. Fantastic.
After checking out the hotel restaurant channel, I was excited to hear that the Cake Boss Buddy was now in town. He has his bakery and restaurant located where I was staying inside The Palazzo – very convenient! There was a line 30 people long just to get into the bakery. I had to convince my friends to join me at Buddy V’s Italian Restaurant (his first!) in Las Vegas. Needless to say, it was one of the best meals of the trip. We all devoured the most amazing Chicken Parmigiana, Eggplant Parmigiana, Roasted Branzino, Classic New York Pizza, Panzerella Salad and Fresh Burrata Cheese Salad. For dessert, we sampled Homemade Cannolis. This restaurant is winning awards. We had such a great time with our server, Georgio. He made us feel right at home and said we were welcome any time. We will definitely return. I rate Buddy V’s high with 5 forks.
Then much to my delight I discovered that my favorite show was performing at my hotel. I was lucky enough to secure tickets for my group for Dancing with the Stars/The Tour at The Venetian Hotel, which is conveniently connected to The Palazzo. The show was awesome and a real thrill for all of us. It was even more thrilling when some of the pro dancers showed up at our pool the next day! What fun!
Lagasse’s Stadium (as in Emeril), originally designed and created by Jay Z, is very chic and cool for any sports fan. This is truly the place to be for football weekends or any sports you fancy, as the place offers over 100 televisions – each table has their own – and can request any game you want to watch while snacking on Emeril’s delectable menu items. His sports bar themed menu is offering famous Chicken Wings (of course!) two ways – the traditional spicy hot way or with Emeril’s Thai sauce, which was tangy and sweet. The hamburgers are big and delicious. But the must have is Emeril’s famous Banana Cream Pie made to perfection.
We had two other amazing dining experiences at SushiSamba and Tao Las Vegas. SushiSamba (offering fare from Japan, Brazil and Peru) had extremely sophisticated décor and a must mention appetizer offering of Seared Wagyu Beef. The beef was grilled in front of us on our table on a (very hot) stone. This was fun and festive. We also enjoyed the Miso-Marinated Chilean Sea Bass, and Specialty Samba Rolls; Neo Tokyo (Big Eye Tuna), Carnaval (Shrimp, Avocado, and Yellowtail), and Lima (Shrimp Tempura, Spicy King Crab and Avocado). Simply Divine. Be sure to try the cocktails, their award winning Mixologist is mixing things up to a higher level.
Tao was quite the scene in a beautiful setting, while serving up delicious gourmet Chinese cuisine. We nibbled on Lobster Wontons with Shitake Ginger Broth, Spicy Tuna Tuna Tartare on Crispy Rice, King Crab California Roll, Wasabi Crusted Filet Mignon with Tempura of Onion Rings, Chinese Sausage Fried Rice with Fried Egg, and decadent Crispy Orange Chicken (the best I’ve ever tasted!).
And finally, to complete your stay, do not miss visiting a spa. The Palazzo’s Canyon Ranch Spa is one of the nicest spas at which you can unwind and relax. Sample everything the facility has to offer. Try the sauna, steam room, heated spa, and tropical showers (my personal favorite – I swear it will bring out the kid in anyone!). There are numerous treatments offered… definitely sample a few. You will not regret this experience.